We were given the task from Premera Blue Cross to design a response that assists caregivers in finding care for others. Our team looked at how parents find care for their child with asthma.
My Role: Information architecture, Interaction design, Prototyping, Illustrations, Research, Usability testing
Duration: 10 weeks
Sponsor: Premera Blue Cross
Team: Oliver Engel, Rohan Chavan
Tools: Figma, Principle, Origami, Illustrator, Photoshop
How might we guide parents through their child’s asthma care journey?
Empower parents with actionable care advice
Help parents schedule and manage appointments
Inform parents about asthma triggers in the area
I believe understanding parents care-finding experience will help us make design decisions based on their needs and wants. Our project began with a mix of primary & secondary research to better understand the design space and the problems parents face daily.
1. Asthma is the most common chronic disease among children.
2. Parents help their children communicate to a third party.
We used the cultural probe method to understand how parents and their children communicate with each other, and if it influences the process of parents finding care for their children. After talking with families, we learned the following:
Parents are the bridge in helping a third party understand their kids.
In the presence of a third party, kids were less likely to express themselves, and parents played an important role in making kids comfortable.
3. Parents struggle to find and maintain the best care for their asthmatic children.
We conducted semi-structured interviews with adults and parents of children with asthma. We learned that it is hard for parents to manage different types of medication, from control medicine to quick-relief medicine. Based on the child’s symptoms and peak flow, parents need to decide which medication their child takes.
4. There are design problems with existing solutions.
We conducted a competitive analysis on the Treatment Plan document that is recommended by almost every medical association in the US. It’s a pairing of symptoms and peak flow measurements to medications. Unfortunately, the asthma patients we spoke to said that they either never were given this paper document or it ends up in a junk drawer.
Parent’s Decision Making Process
I created a flow diagram that defines the major actions and decisions parents encounter when taking care of their asthmatic child. We discovered that parents need help the most with (1) managing medications, (2) knowing when to visit the doctor, and (3) understanding asthma triggers. We decided to respond to these three problem areas that are color coded below.
"Care plan" "Appointments" and "Triggers" that we defined as problem areas in the previous diagram each transformed into a key path in our design.
Through a series of timed ideation exercises, we brainstormed a total of 90 ideas. This approach encouraged us to look at all the possible design responses.
To begin our down-selection process, we used the Six Thinking Hats Method and the Decision-matrix Method. These methods helped us thoughtfully evaluate, and rank our ideas as team. We combined the winner ideas together, and eventually came down to 3 concepts.
Low-fidelity prototypes were helpful in visualizing concepts, making quick iterations, and facilitating discussions with other team members.
In Figma, we collaboratively created mid-fidelity prototypes and presented them in class. Feedback from peers and instructors helped us further improve our design flow.
Visual Design Process
We want our product to be light, positive, supportive, and organic while still feeling professional. The Moodboard let us visualize and discuss about the look and feel.
I took the responsibility to design illustrations for our prototype. Inspired by our mood board, I explored different styles and color combinations. Variations helped the team compare and decide on the best design.
Osler’s illustrations are clean and clear, using gradients and smooth shapes to stand out from the UI.
04. Final deliverables
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Defining Problem Space
We started the project with a broad scope of helping parents take care of their children. Through the process, I learned the importance of narrowing the scope down. The more specific we can define the problem space, the better we can design for the target audience.
We fixed several usability issues along the way by conducting usability testings with colleagues. However, I believe it is crucial to get feedback from our end users. To further improve our prototype, I would like to conduct more usability testing with parents who are familiar with asthma.